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Happy Face Mindset Tool

A Positive Mindset To Increase Your Happiness by 100%

Long-time mindfulness meditators simply see. They assign very little meaning to reality.

After taking their spiritual lives so seriously, they have come to understand that life isn’t serious at all – it just is.

If you have unconscious mindsets or beliefs that upset or cause you pain, here are valuable tools that will transform the way you look at life forever – I promise!

This Christmas I watched the movie, “Home Alone.” It’s a story of an eight-year-old boy, who is mistakenly left behind when his family flies to Paris for their Christmas vacation.

While initially relishing time by himself, he misses his family and feels responsible for wishing they would leave him alone.

After watching the movie, I noticed that I was feeling negative feelings about my family. I felt sad and disconnected. As I watched my feelings surrounding this situation, it became clear that I had two choices in how to deal with these negative feelings.

  1. Choose to ascribe no meaning to the situation
  2. Claim ownership of my feelings and say, “I am angry, sad, unhappy and disappointed”

I chose number 1.

Negative Feelings

Our problems don’t exist outside of us. It is our minds that are thinking stressful thoughts and it is our response to the problem that creates negative feelings.

The stress we feel has everything to do with the meaning we decide to give the situations we experience in our lives.

What Meaning?

There is no inherent meaning in anything. We, with our minds, assign meaning to whatever we choose to find meaningful.

Some find meaning in sporting events, while others find meaning in music or nature.

The meanings we give to situations, events and relationships are the biggest cause of our unrest, unhappiness and misery.

Here are two of my favorite fables that illustrate how we attribute meaning to our experiences and relationships in life.

Is That So?

The Zen master Hakuin was praised by his neighbors as one living a pure life.

A beautiful Japanese girl whose parents owned a food store lived near him. Suddenly, without any warning, her parents discovered she was with child.

This made her parents angry. She would not confess who the man was, but after much harassment at last named Hakuin.

In great anger the parent went to the master. “Is that so?” was all he would say.

After the child was born it was brought to Hakuin. By this time he had lost his reputation, which did not trouble him, but he took very good care of the child. He obtained milk from his neighbors and everything else he needed.

A year later the girl-mother could stand it no longer. She told her parents the truth – the real father of the child was a young man who worked in the fish market.

The mother and father of the girl at once went to Hakuin to ask forgiveness, to apologize at length, and to get the child back.

Hakuin was willing. In yielding the child, all he said was: “Is that so?”

We’ll See…

A farmer had only one horse. One day, his horse ran away.

All the neighbors came by saying, “I’m so sorry. This is such bad news. You must be so upset.” The man just said, “We’ll see.”

A few days later, his horse came back with twenty wild horses. The man and his son corralled all 21 horses.

All the neighbors came by saying, “Congratulations! This is such good news. You must be so happy!” The man just said, “We’ll see.”

One of the wild horses kicked the man’s only son, breaking both his legs.

All the neighbors came by saying, “I’m so sorry. This is such bad news. You must be so upset.” The man just said, “We’ll see.”

The country went to war, and every able-bodied young man was drafted to fight. The war was terrible and killed every young man, but the farmer’s son was spared, since his broken legs prevented him from being drafted.

All the neighbors came by saying, “Congratulations! This is such good news. You must be so happy!” The man just said, “We’ll see.”

Your Experiences

For the sake of this article, let’s call situations, events, occurrences, relationships and circumstances: Experiences.

These experiences are what is happening in your life and have no inherent meaning in and of themselves. What happens in reality and the meaning you give those experiences exist only in your mind.

Separate Meaning From Experience

When you are able to separate the meaning you give to life’s circumstance and situations – your negative feelings disappear!

Happy Face Positive Mindset Tool

With this simple 3 step positive mindset tool, I promise to completely transform the way you experience your reality.

Do this for 10 days – I promise you’ll get more happiness, poise and inner peace – guaranteed!

Remember, everything that is happening in your life, events, occurrences, situations, circumstances and relationships have no inherent meaning in and of themselves.

  1. Notice Negative Feelings. Be extremely aware every time you notice a negative feeling, like “I’m upset, angry, hurt, dissatisfied, scared etc.”
  2. Check Meaning. Ask yourself what meaning you gave to the event or circumstance that made you feel the negative feeling.
  3. Separate Meaning From Experience. See the situation or circumstance separately from the meaning you gave it. When you can separate the meaning from the experience – the meaning you gave it will disappear.

PRESTO! Meaningless experiences can’t produce negative feelings. Instant Happy Face!

Message In A Bottle

When my friend Sal Terrezza told me about his “jar” technique to help him better cope with his teenage daughters – I immediately saw the benefit and modified it a bit.

Every time you notice a negative feeling like, “Wow, I was really offended by what that person said to me – I am really hurt.” Or, “I’ve lost a lot of money, what will become of me? I am so afraid.”

Cut up a small slip of paper, write down the negative emotion and take a match and burn off the corners – but leave the message intact.

Put the slip of paper in a glass jar. This will serve to bring awareness to your negative emotions.

You’ll be able to place yourself outside of your feelings realizing that you HAVE feelings but you are NOT your feelings.

This distinction between “you” and “your feelings.” allows you to see and release the effects they have on you.

Burning the edges of the paper further symbolizes the release of these negative emotions.

Now that you can see your emotions in the jar – ask yourself:

“What meaning did I give to that person, event or circumstance that made me feel these negative feelings?”

When you can separate negative feeling and meaning from experience – happiness is the result.

  • Added bonus…

When your glass jar is full of negative emotions, take them out and look at them one by one.

You will realize that the emotions and meanings you assigned to your experiences weren’t nearly as bad as you thought they were when they were happening to you.

In fact, they often turn out to be the best things that ever happened to you!

Lighten Up

Feelings are part of the human experience, I’m not asking you not to feel. You can certainly decide what meaning you choose to give to any experience or situation at any time.

I’m merely offering tools to help you better cope with stress and improve your positive daily mindset so you can lighten up.

We take ourselves too seriously – the ego likes it that way. This seriousness is our resistance to life.

Meaning, experience and feelings are all jokes. Have a good laugh at yourself.

Notice when you laugh – your ego is gone!

If you would like more insights on how to better cope with your mindsets, or to create new healthy mindsets, here is another article I think you’ll like. Letting Whatever Happens Be Okay.

If you found this article to be helpful, share it with others. I’d love to hear your comments. If you write to me, I promise to write back.


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